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Common name: Osage OrangeType: TreeAspect: Prefers full sunColour: YellowSeason: AutumnSoil: Not specifiedSize: MediumDelivery: Mail order or collect in personImage: WTGN
Osage orange A very rare, medium sized deciduous tree or perhaps a large shrub if allowed to develop a multi-stem habit. The highly distinctive and decorative fruit, is roughly spherical, bumpy 8 to as much as 15 centimetres in diameter turning bright yellow-green in the autumn. Despite the name the fruit are inedible. The leaves are an elongatd oval, some 10cm long and are dark glossy green, turning bright yellow in the autumn. Maclura pomifera prefers a deep and fertile soil, and sunny conditions. Potentially vigorous, so give plenty of room. H: approximately 6-8m
Maclura pomifera, native to more or less north-eastern Texas has been known by a variety of common names in addition to Osage orange, including hedge apple, horse apple, bois d'arc, bodark, monkey ball, bow-wood, yellow-wood and mock orange.
It also had a significant history of traditional use amongst the First Nations of North America. According to Wikipedia, Maclura pomifers acquired the name bois d'arc, or "bow-wood", from early French settlers who observed the wood being used for war clubs and bow-making by Native Americans. American explorer Meriwether Lewis was told that the people of the Osage Nation, "So much esteem the wood of this tree for the purpose of making their bows, that they travel many hundreds of miles in quest of it." The Comanches also used this wood for their bows.